Hobby Lobby Wins!
The Supreme Court of the United States has ruled that closely held corporations cannot be required to provide contraception coverage in conflict with their beliefs. The decision was issued in a 5-4 ruling Monday morning. The enormous forty-nine page majority opinion was written by Justice Alito, with Justice Kennedy writing a four page concurrence. Justice Ginsburg was joined in her dissent by Justice Sotomayor, with Justices Breyer and Kagan each filing their own dissenting opinions.
The major question in the case was whether a corporation would have protection under the 1993 Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA). According to the Supreme Court, yes they do. The Court held that closely held corporations are "persons" for purposes of RFRA. This means that RFRA gives protection not only to individuals, but also to closely held corporations. A closely held corporation is a private corporation with limited shareholders, usually family members or other close associates. RFRA is a federal statute that only applies to actions of the federal government and does not apply to the state.
“This case will have a substantial and beneficial impact upon a current case we are defending where a private corporation in California is being sued by former employer for alleged religious discrimination.” Robert Tyler, General Counsel, said “We have been awaiting this decision and are looking forward to applying this decision to protect religious freedom in the future.”